Our interest is to obtain a finished product with a “high nutritional quality” containing the natural essential nutrients of the original raw material, such as lactic acids, mineral salts or vitamines.
The interest becomes even more important since milk and cream alone are 75% of the finished product.
We obtain this “high nutritional quality” by working from unprocessed raw materials, products with so-called “integrity”, i.e. less or non-processed by the agro-industry and by using conscious manufacturing processes.
We do not use milk powder, cocoa or egg powder but we work with farm-fresh milk and cream and moreover directly purchased from a farm and not from a dairy factory.
Consequently, the products are not treated in a dairy factory for long-term storage as they are to be frozen (no UHT treatment, no homogenisation of milk by micronising, no standardisation of the milk or cream).
The nutritional value of freeze-dried (lyophilised) raw materials or processed milk by the dairy industry is indeed questionable.
In order to get long-life milk, which is known as brick milk, dairy industries apply treatments such as UHT, well known for giving milk a longer shelf life. Another treatment is the homogenisation by micronisation. This process disrupts the curdling and separation of milk into layers (cream, whey, water, fat etc). Consequently, we don’t have to shake our milk carton before opening it. The third treatment is a standardisation process where milk contains the same amount of fat (3,5% milk fat for whole milk, half for semi-skimmed, etc).
If these treatments allow distribution of milk and cream into distribution networks and meet the edicts of the market regarding standardisation it is not without consequences for the essential nutrients originally present in the milk. These treatments are harmful and are no longer justified in the production of ice cream as durability and separation issues are averted by freezing. As to the alleged consumer wish for standard products, we don’t really believe it. If the consumers accept a seasonal effect on fruit and vegetables at the end and beginning of the season, why would they not understand it regarding cow milk?
At Sikou the only treatment applied to raw farm milk and raw farm cream is a mild pasteurisation, softer and more suitable for the specific character of our products.
« Due to the absence of UHT treatment and micronisation the products are better tolerated by our bodies. Micronisation of dairy products for example, can cause intestinal cramping for some individuals. Just as we make every effort to preserve the structure of foods we definitely to get involved in food chemistry. This is just ice cream with a few ingredients, the most simple and readable ones and in accordance to what nature provides.»
Of course the use of farm-fresh milk and cream is more complex to manage than the use of powders and this complexity has an impact on the price of our products. However, the result is a more transparent finished product, more digestible and of a 'high nutritional quality.' And this is the trademark of Sikou products.
This is our commitment and the choice offered to our customers, to consider their food, i.e. their fuel, not from the point of view of the price but rather from the ratio between price and counterpart: nutritional quality and health risk related to the opacity of the components and their origin.
We use semi-refined cane sugar, fresh eggs and whole vanilla beans; there is no addition of flavours (even if natural) and we make the caramel in our workshop, all this proves that we share the same desire to maintain the structure, transparency and 'high nutritional value' of our raw materials.